Just One Thing

To what is your mind given? The Practice: Come to center. Why? I’m old enough to remember a time when people usually answered “good” when you asked them the standard, “How are you?” (often said “harya?”). These days the answer is commonly “busy.” I know what it feels like...

What do others want? The Practice: See good intentions. Why? Hustling through an airport, I stopped to buy some water. At the shop’s refrigerator, a man was bent over, loading bottles into it. I reached past him and pulled out one he’d put in. He looked up, stopped...

What's carrying you? The Practice: Lived by love. Why? Feeling both the world and myself these days, one phrase keeps calling: lived by love. Explicitly, this means coming from love in a broad sense, from compassion, good intentions, self-control, warmth, finding what’s to like, caring, connecting, and kindness. Implicitly, and more...

What's precious to you? The Practice: Find what's sacred. Why? The word, sacred, has two kinds of meanings. First, it can refer to something related to religion or spirituality. Second, more broadly, it can refer to something that one cherishes, that is precious, to which one is...

Are you full to the rim? The Practice: Empty the cup. Why? Once upon a time, a scholar came to visit a saint. After the scholar had been orating and propounding for a while, the saint proposed some tea. She slowly filled the scholar's cup: gradually...

When are you? The Practice: Enjoy now. Why? There’s a profound and miraculous mystery right under our noses: this instant of now has no duration at all, yet somehow it contains all the causes from the past that are creating the future. Everything arising to become...

Did you truly choose this path? The Practice: Find your own way. Why? The human body has about 100 trillion cells (plus another ten quadrillion microscopic critters hitching a ride, most of them beneficial or harmless). Each one of your cells has aims - goals, in a sense -...

Who are you, deep down? The Practice: Know you're a good person. Why? For many of us, perhaps the hardest thing of all is to believe that "I am a good person." We can climb mountains, work hard, acquire many skills, act ethically - but truly feel...

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